In your face, social justice warriors and bathroom raiders!
In spite of the threats from outside sources, the washed up artists, and company withdrawals, North Carolina has tied with the formidable state of Texas to take the #1 spot in the first annual Prosperity Cup, as awarded by Site Selection Magazine.
Today, Texas is confronting an energy sector downturn that has meant thousands of job losses, even as projects from so many other sectors keep landing there. In North Carolina, the downturn takes the form of a widely shared frown, as newly passed legislation many view as discriminatory to the LGBT community has caused major company project cancellations, event pullouts and boycotts of the state.
But if any territories are built to withstand such storms, these two are. In the analysis for Site Selection’s annual Prosperity Cup (formerly named the Competitiveness Award), Texas and North Carolina finish in a tie for No. 1, based on an index of 10 criteria that measure corporate project activity and business climate attractiveness.
What do both states’ economic development portfolios have in common? The same things any investment portfolio would: Breadth, depth and economic diversity.
In addressing North Carolina, specifically, the article states:
The state’s position of strength is clear enough, most recently bolstered by a AAA bond rating and record venture capital numbers.
Site Selection Magazine interviewed North Carolina Secretary of Commerce John E. Skvarla, III about how the state has been impacted by the maelstrom surrounding House Bill 2.
Skvarla explained that because of the media attention, the natural inclination was for company executives to express curiosity, but what they’re finding is that the media has confused or outright misrepresented the facts of the bill.
When pressed for what has gone into creating the attractive economic development of the state, the Secretary notes:
“We have several innovative things underway that will make a real impact. To speed major site development for large industrial projects, we have reserved up to $35 million over the next three years to meet public infrastructure needs at qualifying locations, thanks to a collaboration between the GoldenLEAF Foundation and the Rural Infrastructure Authority, which is supported by my team at North Carolina Commerce.
Another initiative is our Innovation to Jobs program, which includes a Venture Multiplier fund of $40 million to support technology transfers. Finally, we’re fundamentally rethinking how we utilize the state’s assets to generate income, particularly our underutilized real estate assets. We call this Project Phoenix, and it will create thousands of construction, engineering, architecture, logistics and finance jobs over the coming years.”
Basically, this is a really involved way of saying that the state of North Carolina is open for business. Governor McCrory has put a solid team together. They’re making amazing strides to benefit the citizens of the Tarheel state, and if you’re more concerned about the bathroom policy of North Carolina businesses than the fact that the state is a healthy place to have a business, then your priorities are royally screwed up.